A burnout on its own is debilitating enough. But having a burnout and having children is completely grueling. While you are in the process of recovery, a lot is being asked of you as a parent. This can hinder and / or slow down your recovery process. Recovering from a burnout with children; how can you best approach this?
Make clear and sound agreements with your family
If you have a burnout, it is important that you always indicate what is doable for you. Most importantly, you must not exceed your own boundaries. It may no longer be doable to pick up and drop off the children from school and / or to provide dinner as well. It is important to hand over these tasks, only in this way you will be able to recover. Try to look for alternatives so that everyone within the family learns to deal with the situation and still receives sufficient care and attention.
It’s a temporary situation
You need to be aware of the importance of cancelling certain tasks. It is necessary so that you can recover. If you don’t do this, your complaints will increase. A helpful thought; the fact that certain tasks can no longer be performed by you, does not mean that this will never be possible again! Remember this is a temporary situation.
Ask for help to people around you
Calling on others is inevitable if you want to recover from your burnout. By nature you want to take care of your family and spend as much time as possible with them. But if you don’t ask for help you’ll be fighting a running battle. Perhaps neighbors, your in-laws, childcare or friends can help you out. Every little bit helps. Ask yourself: if it was the opposite situation and someone close to you had burned out, what would you do? You’d probably lend a hand!
Communicate (if possible) with your children.
Although your children may be too young to understand the situation, it is important that you communicate with them. Explain why you are taking more rest or why they may see you sad more often. In particular, try to name the benefits of taking a rest and the benefits of showing your emotions. “If I go to bed a little earlier, I will be happier the next day. So, will everyone make sure that we sleep well tonight?”, or “When I express my emotions to you, I feel relieved and happier after!”.
Reserve a moment in which you give focused attention to your child(ren). Do something that you are sure will stay within your limits. Maybe you can read something from their favorite book, draw / paint something or take a (short) walk together. By doing this, they know nothing has changed in their enjoyable activities. You can fight the distance you may feel between you and your children, by spending a small moment with them every day. This is so valuable! For example, the children do not really care who brings them to sports or school, they are more concerned with the quality time they get to spend with you. Try to think of this when you feel guilty, when you don’t take them to sports / school, for example.
Tip: schedule these quality time moments within the NiceDay app! Download it here.
Do you need help with a burnout, or are you interested in the possibilities of online help via NiceDay? Click here for more information.